Derbyshire v Leicestershire at Derby on 26th July: FLt20: North Division
By John Brown
After their stunning victory over their old rivals at Trent Bridge earlier in the week, Derbyshire hopes were high as they went into this match with Leicestershire.
The visitors, who had already had their chances of making further progress in the competition dashed, won the toss and chose to bat first. Despite an accurate few overs from Tim Groenewald, Leicestershire’s openers made steady progress and reached 48 without loss by the end of their six overs of PowerPlay. As in the match with Nottinghamshire, Peter Burgoyne dismissed an opening batsman with his second ball, once again a good catch taken at long-off.
Alex Hughes also bowled well again and he finished with three wickets to help restrict Leicestershire to 151 for six wickets. Derbyshire must have felt reasonably confident that this target was well within their reach, especially so after the first over of their reply went for fourteen runs. The first over from Ireland, however, soon introduced doubts as he dismissed both Chesney Hughes and Wes Durston.
The situation became worse when Ireland took another two wickets in his second over. Derbyshire found themselves on 22 for four, so something special was needed from Shivnarine Chanderpaul, happily returned from his two-week break with injury, and the lower middle-order batsmen.
Chanderpaul did his best, but he did not find runs as easy to come by as he would have hoped, and the batsmen at the other end lost their wickets as they tried to increase the run-rate. Once Chanderpaul was caught on the long-off boundary, the match was as good as over and Derbyshire slipped to their lowest all out total in Twenty20 cricket, 72, with almost six overs remaining.
This was a very disappointing performance: even their ground-fielding, usually such a strong feature of their cricket, was very ordinary and the heavy defeat by 79 runs left Derbyshire with no chance, whatever the mathematicians might say, of making further progress in the competition this season.
Leicestershire 151 for 6 (20 overs) (GP Smith 42, EJH Eckersley 42, NJ O’Brien 26, JJ Cobb 21; AL Hughes 3 for 32)
Derbyshire 72 (14.1 overs) (S Chanderpaul 25; AJ Ireland 4 for 11, JJ Cobb 3 for 19, Shakib al Hasan 2 for 7)
Leicestershire (2 points) beat Derbyshire by 79 runs
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